School: Troy High School
Accomplishment: Flying toward his Eagle Scout Badge as a member of Boy Scouts of America Troop 1702, Danny O’Donovan organized the I’m Down With That 5K Run/1K Walk at Boulan Park to benefit the Down Syndrome Guild of Michigan.
The non-profit guild provides support, resources and advocacy to increase awareness and opportunities for individuals living with Down Syndrome.
Taking more than six months to organize, the June 25 event served both as a way for O'Donovan to meet his Eagle Scout requirements, as well as a tribute of sorts to his 13-year-old sister, Erin, who lives with Down Syndrome. Working with his family, Boy Scout troop and the guild, O’Donovan was able to recruit more than 300 participants for the event.
Key to Awesomeness: O’Donovan’s inspiration for the project flowed mostly from his sister, Erin.
“I was aiming high, looking at around 150 people including volunteers,” O’Donovan said about his initial attendance goal. However, reception to the event far exceeded his expectations.
The run/walk route wound through Boulan Park and the surrounding neighborhood. Volunteers passed out water and provided motivation along the route.
O’Donovan and other speakers shared insight about Down Syndrome at the finish line. Runners and walkers signed a banner to commemorate the project. Participants were asked to donate at least $10 to take part in the event.
Though he said donations are one positive outcome from the event, he said he hopes his efforts will help spread knowledge and awareness.
“The main goal in organizing this event was to raise awareness about the abilities of people with Down Syndrome,” O’Donovan said.
Each week, Troy Patch seeks suggestions from readers for individual kids, youth groups, teens and even sports teams that wow us with their accomplishments. We want to hear about these amazing children and teens and select one each week as the Patch Whiz Kid. Submit your nomination in our comment box below or email the information to Kevin Elliott. Be sure to include all of the following information:
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